Between the Vézère and Dordogne valleys, there is a bright and magical land, a charming destination, the heart of Prehistory, Middle Age excellence, castles and gardens as well as many other treasures waiting to be discovered. The Périgord Noir Region. Its capital, Sarlat, a city of Art and History, offers under its old stones, an architectural heritage of invaluable wealth.


Human presence has been certified in Montignac since paleolithic times. The town is gratified by 2 major prehistoric sites, « the caves of Lascaux » and the Neanderthal findingspot « le Regourdou ». The town’s history can be traced back to the Roman colonisation. Two villae have been found: the villa of the  Olivoux (at the  »Chambon » north of Montignac) and the villa of Brenac.

The medieval times see the rise of an important fortress. It  often changes hands through mariage, sale, inheritance till it becomes part of the belongings of the Albret family. This family keeps the castle till 1603, date on which  Henri IV gives it to  François de Hautefort, lord of Thenon. The castle will be demolished in 1825, and leaves us today only one tower still standing and some of its original infrastructure.
The town was constucted on a spot where one could « wade » across the river, the present bridge dates from 1766-1767. Each side of the river shows the signs of the town’s history.
On the righthand side one finds small medieval alleys, with architectural elements from the 14th, 15th and 16th century, houses on stilts, half timbered houses, wash houses and fountains.
The lefthand side with the old center and its convent, its priory and the quays reminds us of the religious and commercial vocation of Montignac  (commercial port) under the old regime.

Source Wikipedia